Friday, March 23, 2007

The job hunt has begun

With plans to return to the U.S. in early July and begin an indefinitely long teaching career (that is, unless--or until?--something else calls, perhaps a role in Church education at home or abroad), I've begun hacking my way through the jungle of job hunting. Forget the Amazon; this is far worse. You see, I'm at a slight disadvantage, with nothing less than the Atlantic Ocean (plus the Mediterranean Sea to boot!) between me and those lovely faces representing schools from across Michigan and the rest of the U.S. at the education job fairs that sprout like mushrooms every April.

So, like Jesus' teaching, "Behold, there went out a sower to sow" (Mark 4:3 KJV), I'm e-mailing tons of school districts to let them know I exist. I figure that at three schools per day, I can catch some 250 schools before I return. I have yet to find a single job posting for the 2007-08 school year, but this is normal, and it'll be even crazier and more last-minute with the funding cuts and whopping 8% unemployment in Michigan. Shall I perhaps end up living outside the bounds of my beloved Mitten? O Pleasant Peninsula, may it never be!

Well, if New England weren't so outrageously expensive (Massachusetts, southern NY, Connecticut) or shrinking and underfunded (Vermont, Maine, New Hampshire), then maybe it would be a good location. Besides, how cool would it be to say I live in a town called Schenectady? There are plenty of jobs, however, in the South: the Carolinas, Virginia, and Georgia, where school districts are growing rapidly.

But in the midst of retraining my mind to the world of science--particularly biology and chemistry--I'm finding that, in fact, I am excited about getting back into the classroom. First off, there's the coolness contained in discovering how batteries work (which do not get lighter after use), the mysteries of tree growth (whose mass does not come from the soil), and diving into the complex web of interactions between man and the rest of nature (sorry, Al Gore, but it looks like global warming has been a historically present and cyclical phenomenon--though we are exacerbating it). But alongside that are even greater enigmas to be explained: teenagers. I think it's quite fitting that the Turkish word for "teenager" is delikanlı, which means "crazy-blooded."

So from now on, more news and thoughts about my soon-to-be life as an educator will be cropping up from time to time. My apologies to all who hated science; you didn't have me as your teacher!

1 comment:

HALFMOM said...

Ahh Andrew - yes, you will fill a new generation with a love for science! I can see it already.

Thanks for the comment - twice - I did a similar thing and actually published it twice - just getting used to the comment enable system as I had not normally posted to that site. I had a scathing one that I had to get rid of - for the writer's sake, not mine - so put the comment enable on at that point.

How can I help with the job search? O just told me that she is late with her resume, just sent it to a principal for evaluation before she sends it out for real. We know, through word of mouth, of jobs around here and I believe in the Carolinas and perhaps Virginia where a cousin is a Master teacher in Math - would you really consider not going back to MI? Shall I send you email links, etc?